Tarnya grows her career from home

A Stawell nurse is very grateful that she has been able to broaden her horizons through a program offered by Grampians Health. 

Tarnya Roberts worked for several years in residential aged care at Stawell’s Eventide Homes as a personal carer when she saw an opportunity to advance her career. 

The mother of teenagers has now completed the Wimmera-based traineeship and is working as an enrolled nurse in Stawell’s Simpson ward. 

Tarnya said she was impressed that she was able to complete the traineeship while still working and maintaining an income. 

“I’ve loved getting that hands-on experience and being able to work at the Stawell campus has been amazing,” she said. 

“The support from the nurses has been above and beyond. I felt a part of the team and valued, despite my limitations, and we were given a big variety of learning opportunities. 

The only extended travelling Tarnya and her trainee colleagues did for the entire course was placements at Ballarat campus which consisted of two four-week blocks. 

“The fact that I could do all the training in Stawell where my family is, with only two days a week in Horsham, was the key for me. If I had to travel even three days a week, I doubt that I would have considered the course,” Tarnya said. 

Tarnya was also full of praise for the support she received from her trainers and managers at the Stawell campus. 

“After nine years in aged care, I really enjoyed the opportunity to work on the acute ward and experience a whole other side of nursing. 

“The support from Simpson ward nurse unit managers Amy Yole and Kylie Davey, the education team and my colleagues was absolutely fantastic. It’s always such a positive atmosphere and I know that made it easier for me. 

“We enjoyed being nudged to become the best version of ourselves and I cannot thank the team enough.” 

Tarnya believes her future is working in acute care and has taken one of the positions offered by Grampians Health. 

“I plan on keeping my hand in at aged care on a casual basis, but I would love to pursue a career in acute care,” she said. 

“For anyone who has ever thought about nursing as a career, you need to give it a go because you will learn very early in your studies if nursing is the career for you and that’s important because you need to be passionate about helping people and dedicating yourself to care for them.” 

Grampians Health’s Wimmera-based enrolled nurse traineeship is a two-year program that partners with Federation University. The Diploma of Nursing classes are three days a week with work in the care communities and sub-acute ward two days a week. 

Nursing and Midwifery Education’s Early Career Lead Teagan Green said the traineeship classes included a combination of online and face-to-face delivery, inclusive of clinical simulation to develop both practical and theoretical nursing skills. 

“Grampians Health educators and Federation University staff team-teach into the program for a collaborative approach,” Ms Green said. 

Traineeship teaching days are delivered in both Ballarat and Horsham with trainees working across Ballarat, Stawell, Horsham, Edenhope and Dimboola. 

Advertising for the February 2025 intake of trainees will start in August 2024.